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Abarinda, J, Kibwami, N and Tutesigensi, A (2019) Towards improving schedule performance of construction projects in Uganda with lean construction. In: Gorse, C and Neilson, C J (Eds.), Proceedings 35th Annual ARCOM Conference, 2-4 September 2019, Leeds Beckett University, Leeds, UK Association of Researchers in Construction Management, 658-667.
- Type: Conference Proceedings
- Keywords: lean construction; project delays; schedule performance; Uganda
- URL: http://www.arcom.ac.uk/-docs/proceedings/780345c678ee7228dfbf7a370621b0b2.pdf
Productivity, in terms of construction time performance of building construction projects in Uganda, is wanting – most projects are not completed within their original contract durations. A growing body of research suggests that such productivity challenges could be solved by implementing lean construction. However, there is barely any evidence on how lean construction can be applied to fit a wide variability of project environmental factors surrounding construction practices worldwide. In this paper, research is carried out to determine how Lean construction can be applied to ensure timely completion of construction projects in Uganda, considering the project environmental factors surrounding construction practices. A longitudinal research design was used involving a variety of data collection methods – participant observation, structured interviews and questionnaires. The subjects were contractors that had ongoing projects at the time, and their supervising consultants. Construction practices were assessed, environmental factors identified, and their compatibility with recommended lean tools from literature was assessed. The findings reveal that design changes, due to inadequate initial planning, are among the leading causes of poor time performance, and that contractors lacked discipline to work within time frames. Lean tools that were found to be applicable were value stream mapping, to remove unnecessary processes, and use of the last planner and collaborative planning tools. A strategy for integrating lean construction in the construction practices, cognizant of the environmental factors, was proposed based on the most appropriate lean tools suitable. Recommendations that were posed, basing on the proposed strategy include: all participants’ involvement at the planning stage to minimize changes during construction and hiring managers of construction projects based on their qualifications, among others. The research shows that understanding project environmental factors, which ultimately affect productivity in terms of time performance, enhances better applicability of lean construction.